Mumbai: Superstar Amitabh Bachchan, a co-star to actor AK Hangal in 'Sholay', had helped him out financially when he was undergoing treatment, one of the few from the industry who came to the rescue of the cash-strapped veteran who died on Sunday at the age of 95.
"I had helped Hangal Saheb out financially, with limited means but fate is not guided by rupees," Bachchan tweeted on Sunday. Hangal's son had made an impassioned appeal through the media for help for the actor who was living in poverty and had little money to spare for medicines and bare essentials to keep him comfortable at his advanced age.
Several industry professionals had responded to the call extending financial help to the beloved actor who made his debut in the 1967 film Shagird. "People who have worked with my father, like Mr Amitabh Bachchan and also people much, much younger, like Karan Johar, have helped out financially when they heard of the state we were in," Vijay had said in an earlier interview with IBNLive. He had insisted that the actor had no immediate need for money and that he was doing all right with the regular help from the association that looked into the welfare of cinema artistes.
Hangal has been active in filmdom since 1967 and played on-screen father, grandfather, great-grandfather and uncle to many top notch Bollywood actors.
Hailed once as the 'uncrowned king of theatre', Hangal was not very keen to join films but ended up playing roles of the loving father or grandfather and doting servant of Bollywood with elan. He played roles in films like 'Sholay', 'Shaukeen', 'Namak Haram', 'Aaina', 'Avtaar', 'Arjun', 'Aandhi', 'Kora Kagaz', 'Bawarchi', 'Chitchor', 'Guddi', 'Abhimaan', 'Anamika' and 'Parichay'.
He was also a regular in Rajesh Khanna's starrers like 'Aap Ki Kasam', 'Amar Deep', 'Naukri', 'Thodisi Bewafaii' and 'Phir Wohi Raat'.